Seattle and Portland named Top Cycling Cities in U.S.

July 24, 2016

GO Pedal!

By OutdoorsNW staff

Photo at right: Seattle has over seven miles of protected bike lanes, like this one along Second Avenue in downtown Seattle. Photo courtesy of Seattle Department of Transportation


Seattle and Portland are currently the top two bicycling cities in the U.S., according to Zillow, a real estate and rental marketplace database headquartered in Seattle. In early 2016 Zillow used the percentage of bike commuters, commute time via bike, rental listings that mentioned bike storage and the miles of protected bike lanes to identify top biking cities across the nation.

According to Zillow, Seattle has seven miles of protected bike lanes, and bike commuters that take an average of 27 minutes to ride to work. With only 23 apartment units that had bike storage mentioned per 1,000 rental listings, Seattle has 42 cyclists per 1,000 commuters.

While Portland has four miles of protected bike lanes and it takes close to 22 minutes for the average bike commuter to ride to work, the city does have a whopping 68 cyclists per 1,000 commuters and 124 apartment units with bike storage per 1,000 rental listings. However, it was the increase of protected bike lanes that gave Seattle the win.

Both cities are experiencing a population boom with a steady stream of workers moving in to fill tech jobs. With more people comes more commuters, and it may appear that Seattle and Portland attract cyclists.

“It’s hard to say whether bike-friendly cities attract cyclists, or whether cyclists influence their cities to become more bike-friendly,” according to Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Svenja Gudell. “It’s probably a little of both.”

Read Zillow’s entire article on Best Bike Cities